Airiz C's Reviews > Lucifer, Vol. 1: Devil in the Gateway

Lucifer, Vol. 1 by Mike Carey
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Aug 03, 11

bookshelves: fantasy, graphic-novel, horror, my-favorites, mythology, paranormal, philosophy, science-fiction, surreal, heroes-to-die-for, the-sandman-catalog
Recommended for: Sandman fans, anyone interested in religion-related lit
Read on August 03, 2011

LUCIFER MORNINGSTAR. Most of us know him as the Prince of Hell, formerly the angel Samael, proud Lightbringer of the Heavens. But you might as well include the first title as a thing of the past, because apparently Lucifer has resigned. Yes, folks, you heard that right: he’s quit.

That's at least according to the canon of Gaiman’s phenomenal graphic novel series, The Sandman. Establishing a continuity with Gaiman’s modern interpretation of the Devil, Mike Carrey crafts this spin-off following Lucifer’s unconventional reconnection with the Creator. As we have seen in The Sandman, Lucifer abdicates his throne in hopes of being free from responsibilities, and then becomes the owner and pianist of a nightclub in Los Angeles. Now he’s opted to be a neutral (or shall we say Machiavellian?) entity between the so-called ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’. Just as he thinks it’s all going smooth, a message from his old employer arrives: God wants him to become heaven’s cleanup man. There’s an ancient force planting the seed of Armageddon in the best soil possible—the human hearts—and it appears that heaven can’t get involved in the affairs of mortals. So they’ve only got one choice, and that is to convince the Fallen One to accept the holy quest with a price of his own choosing.

Lucifer knows his status very well, so when heaven gives him the ‘payment’, he makes it a point to take a good look at the “gift horse’s guts”. What follows next is a string of events that will again disturb the balance of planes—earthly and otherwise.

As a whole, I think this volume is a rather solid kick-off to a new series. The first three issues, which are originally part of the special stand-alone stories called Sandman Presents, has a premise that is vaguely Gaimanesque. But Carey’s distinctive execution makes the story his own, inflating characters with sheer weight using an air so different from Gaiman (though not necessarily better).

I’ve once commended Gaiman for his exceptional interpretation of the biblical figure of the Fallen One. Carey didn’t let me down either, as he is doing a good job of keeping Lucifer an interesting antihero—a character that readers would actually care for. And I think that is magnificently ironic because in actuality, nobody wants to be fond of or to root for the Prince of Hell (except maybe if you’re a Satanist). But the point here is that the molding is good, making Lucifer worthy of being the title character of this series.

I’m intrigued by the new characters and it’s forgivable that they need a little bit more of fleshing out since this is just the first volume. Here we meet a lot of angels, mostly ones that have taken carnal forms, but also those who are still up in the Silver City: Amenadiel, Sandalphon, Meleos, etc. I’m not very well-versed in angelology, but I knew enough to recognize them here and how different Carey’s interpretation of them is in comparison with that of other mythologies (or religious sources). I’m impressed, and I’m looking forward to see more of them in the next tomes.

The artwork is okay, I think, although I'm sort of expecting more impressive ones. I mean, the cover arts are gorgeous....

I would say this volume is more character-driven that plot-driven, but I have a feeling that the storyline will thicken in the next issues. Very engrossing read.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Mark Kenneth I'll be reading this series too. =)


Airiz C kenneth wrote: "I'll be reading this series too. =)"

Please do! It's great, Carey doesn't disappoint in making a Gaiman re-interpreted character bloom into an amazing (anti)hero. :) Also, you like angels so I think you'll like this.


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